Jaylen Brown will be held out of Saturday night’s preseason game against the Toronto Raptors due to Health and Safety Protocols, the team announced. Additionally, Brown will be quarantining due to contracting COVID-19, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania and Marc Stein:
This is not how the Boston Celtics wanted to start the season after Brown wasn’t able to play in the postseason last year due to his wrist injury. Last season, the Celtics led the league in most days missed by players due to the Health and Safety Protocols, and the team is already picking up where last year left off with this latest diagnosis.
The good news is that Brown is asymptomatic and seems to be feeling fine. It appears he’ll just need to quarantine for the 10 days and then he’ll be good to go. The bad news is that he’ll miss the rest of the preseason and potentially the season opener depending on his conditioning. We’ll have to wait for more details as the team announces and as players speak to the media.
Things already got off to a wonky start after head coach Ime Udoka missed Media Day in the last day of his quarantine after catching COVID-19 despite being vaccinated. As far as Brown’s vaccination status, his comments on Media Day left a definitive statement up in the air:
Brown is out for tomorrow's game against Toronto. Here's what he said when asked about getting vaccinated:— Jared Weiss (@JaredWeissNBA) October 8, 2021
"I have my own thoughts about it. I respect my teammate's decisions and things like that. I know everybody has their own opinion on it. I think it's a personal choice."
That could mean a lot of things! The NBPA recently announced that 96% of the players have received at least one dose of the vaccine. As far as Brown, we don’t have anything definitive one way or another.
Thankfully, the Celtics have plenty of wing depth to manage the rest of preseason. Brown by far had the best offensive night of anyone on Monday night’s preseason debut, but this is an opportunity for Romeo Langford and Aaron Nesmith to step up to fill in for Brown. Additionally, Josh Richardson has an opportunity to show more offensively than he did in Monday’s debut.
Hopefully Brown’s diagnosis is the last one for this team for a long time. After last year, they deserve a clean bill of health for a long time.